The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Baking Bread/Pizza in a portable oven????

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taurus430's picture
taurus430

Baking Bread/Pizza in a portable oven????

I normally bake my breads, pizza and rolls in my full size, gas oven. I'd like to get a portable electric oven to bake in and was wondering if any of you do this. I saw a guy on Youtube bake Artisan bread in a cast iron pot in a portable convection oven. Most of what I see are glorified toaster ovens online, but that's about the size I'd like. Any ideas?

Rob 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I've gone thru several.  Try looking up "mini ovens."             :)

taurus430's picture
taurus430

I'm not sure a toaster oven will bake bread although I did Focaccia in a 8" cake pan and it came out excellent. I can't fit a cast iron pot in a toaster oven as all my Artisan breads are no knead, but I can eliminate the pot if necessary to have bread in the summer.

thomaschacon's picture
thomaschacon (not verified)

I own neither, but if their other commercial products are any indication, these should be very high quality.

http://www.waringcommercialproducts.com/catalog.php?pcID=85

Quarter size ($330.00 USD)

Half size ($425.00 USD)

 


thomaschacon's picture
thomaschacon (not verified)

http://www.brevilleusa.com/cooking/ovens.html

I like their products as well, but they're not commercial quality. They are, however, less expensive. 

taurus430's picture
taurus430

I did some researchon Amazon and saw the popular Breville Smart Oven, but the latest reviews are 1 star. Seems there are issues with this. This is less expensive and has better ratings:

Frigidaire Professional 6-Slice
Convection Toaster OvenBut still not sure. I'd like to continue baking in the summer so I don't have to light the large oven and make the house hotter than it is.
Chuck's picture
Chuck

These things are much more commonly used in some parts of the world than others. For example they're probably common as nails in Hong Kong, but  are much less common in North America (and even the U.K.). They're sufficiently uncommon that the big online retailers (like amazon.com) mostly don't carry them. [edit] Amazon.com search makes them so very hard to find they appear to not exist at all  ...but they are there. To find them on Amazon, search for
 countertop convection oven electric -toaster -microwave
(you may need to look at several pages of results, as Amazon doesn't seem to prioritize them all onto the first page properly).
You will probably have to visit individual manufacturers websites to find them. (In fact, this seems to me one of the few items that ideally should be purchased from a bricks-and-mortar store rather than online.)

I think most of them will be "convection" ovens. (I'm not quite sure why. Maybe because all recently designed ovens are that way? Maybe because it uses less electricity, and that's very important for a countertop oven? Maybe because blowing air around is a good way to avoid the "hot spots" that are so likely to be prevalent in a small oven? Maybe because it requires less insulation?)

To avoid blowing an electrical breaker by drawing much more electricity than countertop outlets expect, most of them have about the same "wattage" as a toaster oven. They're also for some reason mostly about the same size as a toaster oven. So they all look very similar. But in fact some of them are actually built very differently from a toaster oven, including having plenty of insulation. Knowing which ones without seeing them can be kinda tricky. Most likely though good differentiators  are:

  • internal size: look for at least 1.5 cubic feet
  • able to hold a sustained high temperature of at least 250C (482F)
  • blow up the picture and check that the temperature control has many marks (every 25F? every 10F?)
  • the picture suggests the walls are fairly thick, which hopefully indicates insulation

If it can't meet even the requirements above, I think you're right that it's just a "glorified toaster oven" that should be steered clear of. (In fact, unless you want to make toast, I'd also suggest ignoring everything that has the word "slice" somehwere in its description:-)

(Unless you want to rewire, make sure it has the right voltage and plug for your countertop. Most will  ...but with some of the "professional" models I'm a little dubious.)